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Reflections about Compassion

I was born and raised as a country girl…still a country girl at heart. Being raised in rural villages back then, there were some experiences and values from which you couldn’t escape, no matter what: contentment and simple living, outdoor fun, friendships for life, being yourself, sharing with family and neighbors, caring for parents and grandparents, respecting older folks, value for education and appreciation of basic needs, especially food. While some of these things were natural to me as a child, now that I’m grown, I have a greater appreciation of country living and how fundamental lessons gained have shaped who I am now.

Today I reflect and share how my mother exposed me to what it is to show care and compassion to others.

When it comes to kindness, my mother is the greatest teacher. Although we didn’t have a lot, she made us share with each other as siblings and with others. She gave away to everyone, be it flowers and slips of roses from her garden or things she made in the kitchen. She went around doing good for the older people in the village. Almost every time she went out, I had to go with her. Every Sunday afternoon she would visit a few of the “shut-ins” to sing, read the “Word” and pray with them.

So, my mother always had someone or two persons that she gave food on a regular basis.

My mother couldn’t see an old man or woman in need of food or a bath and didn’t do something to help. Sometimes when we took the food, we would meet them in an untidy or filthy state. Well, being the godly woman she is, “cleanliness is next to godliness” or “you cannot eat food in an unclean surrounding”, were her favorite sayings. And she would proceed to clean up before giving the food. My role in the care routine was to fetch clean water, assisting her in positioning the individual and feeding the person while she cleaned the bedroom. And so, my friends, that’s how it all started for me…

“We who are strong have an obligation to bear with the failings of the weak, and not to please ourselves” Romans 15:1

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